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November-December Courses


 Did you know…

…creating a daily ritual of gratitude is a powerful happiness tool?

If you’d like to learn more about the science of happiness and how it “works,”

register for the Zoom course that starts Nov. 23rd.

Don’t worry, be happy!



To register for courses at the Dunbar Rec Center,

please call the San Marcos Activity Center at 512-393-8280



To register for courses delivered via Zoom or held at the San Marcos Public Library,

please contact Marianne Reese at 512-216-6427

or lifelonglearningsm@gmail.com





December 8 at 10:30 AM via Zoom


The Art of David Everett at the Witliff


Join David Coleman, Director of the Witliff Collections, and artist David Everett for a visual tour of David’s art housed in the Witliff Collections at Texas State University.

Born in Beaumont, David was drawn to the forests, swamps, bayous, bays, and marsh-covered plains that lead from Beaumont down to the coastline on the Gulf of Mexico. It was from this vantage point that he began a life-long process of restating his observations into a visual art that explores an allegorical interplay of both human and animal forms celebrating a natural history of a personal world.

Another World/The Art of David Everett, edited by Becky Duval Reese, LLL-smtx's resident art expert, was released in October and launched by David and Becky at the Texas Book Festival.

This is a FREE Zoom event co-sponsored by LifeLong Learning-San Marcos

and the Wittliff Collections at Texas State University.


Talking Happiness

When:    Tuesdays (4): Nov. 23, 30 and Dec. 7, 14

Where:  Comfort of your home via Zoom

Time:     2:00 - 3:00 PM

Fee:        $20.00

Course Description

As a general rule

…are you happy?

…how do you know?

What can you do to be and stay happy?


All these months of sickness, death, physical distancing, staying home, Zoom, and myriad political and social strife have challenged even the happiest among us. But what exactly is happiness? How does it “work”? Can we really control our own happiness?


This four-week course will use selected videos and readings to explore various aspects of happiness, including how happiness “works” in our brains, the types and components of happiness, and how we can take ownership of our happiness.


Prior to each week’s session, you will receive links to videos and readings to review prior to class… plan to spend about one hour with the materials. As you watch and read, make notes of questions, observations, “aha moments,” and whatever else strikes you. During our one-hour sessions, we will have open, safe, and non-judgmental conversations to hear different insights and points of view… no doubt, we’ll learn a lot from each other!


About Your Facilitator: Stephanie A. Korcheck

With over 30 years of experience in education-related organizations, Stephanie has expertise in education policy and law, advocacy, and strategic communications. She has an abundance of blessings in her life yet has struggled at times to find her happiness. Stephanie is happiest when she is with family and friends, playing with her dog Emmett, cheering for the Fighting Irish and Longhorns, mixing a good cocktail, cooking/grilling, reading a good book, trying to play her guitar, and learning stuff.


Advanced Quilting... prior experience required

When:   Fridays (8): Dec. 3, 10, 17; Jan. 7, 14, 21, 28; and Feb. 4

Where: Dunbar Recreation Center

Time:    9:30 - 11:00 AM

Fee:       $50.00

Course Description

Participants will make a crib or lap size quilt using a more complex pattern requiring appliqué.


About Your Instructor: Sharon Blancarte

Sharon has been machine sewing since age six and has never looked back. She sews clothes for herself and family and for crafts projects.  Her love of quilting and wanting to share that love make her an enthusiastic instructor.


Introduction to Sewing

When:   Fridays (8): Dec. 3, 10, 17; Jan. 7, 14, 21, 28; and Feb. 4

Where:  Dunbar Recreation Center

Time:     12:30 - 2:00 PM

Fee:        $50.00

Course Description

You will learn the function of each part of a sewing machine and the overall operation of the machine. We will sew small projects chosen by the class at our first session including how to easily place a zipper. (It’s really not that scary.)  Lastly, tips for success and avoiding pitfalls will be shared throughout the class.


Required Supplies

First Class: Sewing machine, including its manual, thread, and bobbins. (Inexpensive machines may be purchased from Amazon or Walmart)

Second Class: Rotary cutter, cutting mat, and acrylic ruler (sold as a unit at Walmart and Joann’s Fabrics for $30) and fabric choice


About Your Instructor: Sharon Blancarte

Sharon has been machine sewing since age six and has never looked back. She sews clothes for herself and family and for crafts projects. Her love of sewing and wanting to share that love make her a great instructor.



Science Fiction Favorites

When:  Wednesdays (6): Dec. 8, Jan. 12,

               Feb. 9, Mar. 9, Apr. 6, May 11

Where: Comfort of your own home via Zoom

Time:    2:00 - 3:30 PM

Course Description

This book discussion group will focus on the most popular science fiction books written in this century. The books on the list are limited to those that have won both the Hugo and Nebula Awards since 2000. The Hugo award is selected by science fiction fans while the Nebula award is selected by science fiction writers. There are only 25 books that hold the rare honor of winning both awards.


The following list is only a suggestion; participants can recommend alternatives at any time. 

Dec. 8 – Ancillary Justice, by Ann Leckie (2014)

Jan. 12 – The Calculating Stars, by Mary Robinette Kowal (2018)

Feb. 9 – The Yiddish Policeman’s Union, by Michael Chabon (2007)

Mar. 9 – The Windup Girl, by Paolo Bacigalupi (2009)

Apr. 6 – Paladin of Souls, by Lois McMaster Bujold (2004)

May 11 – The Stone Sky, by N.K. Jemisin (2017)


About Your Facilitator: Patricia Pattison

Pat is a retired law professor from Texas State University. Since her retirement in 2017 she has enjoyed a variety of Lifelong Learning-San Marcos classes and taught a personal law class in 2019. Pat recently became a member of the advisory board of LLL-smtx.  She has degrees in English, Communications, and Law.


A Demonstration of Primitive Rug Hooking

When:    Thursday, December 2

Where:   San Marcos Public Library

Time:      10:00 AM – Noon


Please register soon to ensure the room is set up properly

Contact Marianne at lifelonglearningsm@gmail.com


Demonstration Description

Rug hooking is both an art and a craft where rugs are made by pulling loops of wool through a stiff woven base such as burlap, linen, or rug warp. The loops are pulled through the backing material by using a crochet-type hook mounted in a handle for leverage. Designs vary from floral and geometric to contemporary and can be hand-drawn or purchased.


Your fabric artists, Helen Pillifant and Sandra Sigler, will have examples of hooked rugs they have crafted; demonstrate the process; and have available frames, wool, and hooks for participants to try out hooking!


If there is sufficient interest, Helen and Sandra would love to share their knowledge of and joy in rug hooking by instructing a group in a future LLL-smtx course.